Adults Over The Age Of 65: Flu Season Is Here

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October 2, 2018

Adults Over The Age Of 65: Flu Season Is Here

senior living

Flu season has arrived, and the importance of getting your vaccination is higher than ever. Last year’s epidemic saw an astonishing 80,000 flu-related deaths, the largest number in four decades. Due to their aging and weakened immune systems, the CDC estimates that the elderly have comprised between 70% and 85% of these seasonal flu-related deaths: the need for those above the age of 65 to receive not only their vaccination, but the best form of it, as soon as possible increases as every day of flu season passes by.

It does not matter if you live in independent housing, with your family, or in one of the various senior living communities, the best way to prevent your body from contracting influenza this year is to get one of the following inoculations:

 

  • High Dose Vaccine: According to the CDC, the high dose vaccine contains four times the amount of antigen as a regular flu shot. As a result, it inspires a stronger immune response (a.k.a. your body produces more antibodies to fight the influenza virus). Of 30,000 participants over the age of 65, those who received the high dose vaccine had 24% fewer influenza infections compared to those who received the standard dose.

 

  • Adjuvanted Vaccine: Known as Fluad, the adjuvanted vaccine contains an additive (MF59) that creates a stronger immune response within your body. A Canadian observational study found that Fluad was 63% more effective than the standard flu shot.

In addition to choosing between the high dose and adjuvanted vaccines, those above the age of 65 should make sure they are up to date with their pneumococcal vaccinations. It guards against pneumococcal diseases such as pneumonia — which is a serious flu-related complication that can cause death –, meningitis, and bloodstream infections.

The best way to protect yourself and your loved ones from the devastation of the influenza virus is to simply be responsible and make an appointment at your local pharmacy or doctor’s office to receive your inoculation. If you are a part of the 50% of adults over the age of 65 who still participate in volunteer activities and are living independently in senior housing or in a senior living community, you don’t want to risk those luxuries by landing yourself in the hospital.

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